A NY Judge for the first time has allowed Facebook to be utilized to serve a Family Court Petition to modify child support where the person could not be located through other means.
The father of the child detailed for the court all efforts made to locate an address for the mother of the child including contacting his 22 year old daughter by text to ask where her mother lives, leaving voice mail for the information, performing a Google search with no valid results and sending a process server to the last known address on file with the Child Support Enforcement Bureau.
The father discovered that the mother has an active Facebook account and that she has "liked" photos that have been posted online. The Court therefore found that since all other reliable methods were not working, that the Petition could be served by messaging it to the mother's Facebook account together with a mailing to her last known address. The Court recognized that while the mother may live anywhere in the country, because she utilizes her Facebook account a viable alternate method to give her notice existed.
It will be interesting to see how other cases involving social media develop when all traditional methods of locating a person fail.